Writer: Brian Hayles
Director: Derek Martinus
Producer: Innes Lloyd
Companions: Victoria Wakefield (Deborah Watling), Jamie McCrimmon (Frazer Hines)
Season: 5, ep. 3 (11-16)
No. of Episodes: 6 (parts 2-3 are animated)
Summary: The Doctor, Jamie, and Victoria arrive on a base in the Arctic run by a giant computer. One of the scientists has discovered two frozen warriors from the planet Mars.
Review: I once heard an Internet reviewer say that during the Troughton era, the “base under siege” formula was used so often, the show could’ve just been re-titled “Base Under Siege! Starring Patrick Troughton!” And this is one of the best examples of this formula.
The Ice Warriors are great villains. They are menacing and their voices are as chilling as their demeanor.
The story is meant to be a commentary on how over-reliance on technology can cause us to become so dependent on it that we would be ill-equipped when faced with a situation where such technology cannot help us. The Ice Warriors are such a situation. Everyone on the base has no idea what to do, because they rely on the computer so much.
The only problem I have with this story is Victoria. I realize that with Deborah Watling’s recent death, finding Victoria a poorly-written character may seem like I’m speaking ill of the dead, but I’m talking about her character, not Watling herself. I just find Zoe Heriot the better Second Doctor companion.
This is a great introduction to a classic villain.
Trivia: This was one of three Second Doctor stories to be restored with animated parts in celebration of Doctor Who’s 50th anniversary in 2013, along with “Enemy of the World” and “The Web of Fear”.